Kakyo Hyoshiki (the oldest extant Kagakusho [a book on the study of waka poems] by FUJIWARA no Haman (歌経標式)

Kakyo Hyoshiki is the oldest extant Kagakusho written by FUJIWARA no Hamanari.

Date of Completion

The preface is dated June 16, 772 and the postscript is dated July 4 of the same year. The preface indicates that this book was dedicated to Emperor Konin.


Kakyo Hyoshiki discussed how Japanese poems should be through the application of rules derived from the Chinese poetic tradition. By applying the theory of poems in Chinese that is a fundamentally different language to Japanese and its poems, however, some "unreasonableness" was inevitable. As a result, it should be stated that this book has value in the history of literature, but it is less valuable in terms of influence on Japanese poetry of later days. It is yet worth considering the reason why such a book was written at that time although it had "unreasonableness."

[Original Japanese]